The market is down 28. The SFE Futures were down 62 overnight.

Wall St. struggled overnight — down 161. Dow closed near its low with low volumes again. It was down 170 at worst. Oil price went backwards for the 6th straight session. Metals all closed lower.

A bit of economic news out today:

  • The RBA left rates on Hold at 3% yesterday.
  • Housing finance numbers better than expected in May. Home loan approvals +2.2% in May from April compared to expectations on 1.5%. Investor confidence increased to a seasonally adjusted 52.6 in 2Q from 33.7 in the 1Q.
  • Consumer sentiment was up by a higher than expected 9.3% in the month of July from June.
  • Job numbers tomorrow where most economists are expecting 25,000 job cuts last month and an unemployment rate of 5.9%.

In the news today:

  • Bendigo & Adelaide Bank (BEN) has paid $5m for 50% of the Tasmanian Perpetual Trustee’s share in Tasmanian Banking Services.
  • Eircom Holdings (ERC) has reached a conditional agreement with its bondholders to restructure the of its Israeli directories unit Golden Pages.
  • Envestra (ENV) has completed a 3 year $280m facility with a syndicate of five banks.
  • Leighton Holdings (LEI) has been awarded a AED 1.4bn project at the Khalifa Port and Industrial Zone by Abu Dhabi Ports.
  • National Australia Bank (NAB) has created a new role to manage the exit of discounted businesses within nabCapital.
  • Service Stream (SSM) has provided a market update and announces it CEO will step down.
  • Australian Worldwide Explorations (AWE) has been fined NZ$52,000 in relation to an oil discharge at Tui oil fields.
  • Lynas Corp (LYC) – the FIRB has asked China Nonferrous Metal Mining to resubmit its application for a majority stake in the company.
  • Western Areas (WSA) has stuck a deal to sell up to 25,000 metric tons of nickel to China’s Jinchuan Group over two years.
  • Macquarie Infrastructure Group (MIG) says it is reviewing options to enhance security holder value but hasn’t yet made any decision to those options.

In other news…

  • JP Morgan has upped its target price’s on the healthcare sector to reflect earnings growth expectations. Cochlear (COH) up to 5802c from 5373c and Sigma Pharmaceuticals (SIP) to 101c from 89c.
  • GSJB Were maintain their Hold recommendation on Transpacific Industries Group (TPI) and 180c target price after it provided a trading update yesterday.
  • Credit Suisse has cut ConnectEast Group’s (CEU) target price to 45c from 67c despite maintaining their Outperform recommendation.

Dow Futures are down 14 at noon.

MARCUS PADLEY is the Author of the MARCUS TODAY Daily Stockmarket Newsletter.

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